100% low-floor model features innovative passenger and driver systems.
On 18 November Polish tram manufacturer Modertrans unveiled its first 100% low-floor tram, the Moderus Gamma. The 32m five-section air-conditioned car has capacity for 244 passengers, with seating for 66 that includes USB charging points. The driver’s cab features touchscreen information panels, while a new pneumatic levelling system maintains a constant floor height, regardless of load, and a capacitor system stores energy recovered during braking.
Construction of the prototype was financed by a PLN14m (EUR3.1m) grant from the National Centre for Research and Development and the EU, and undertaken with the Pozna University of Technology.
Modertrans was founded on 31 December 2005 to take over the workshops of the Pozna undertaking MPK. Initially focused on repairs and modernisations, the company gradually increased the range of modern components incorporated into its rebuilds, including chopper-controlled dc motors, and then asynchrous motors. As well as the Pozna fleet, modernisation of trams from Katowice and Szczecin was undertaken.
The first new trams to be built by the company were 12 bogie cars (Moderus Alfa) for Szczecin in 2011-13. A three-section 25% low-floor articulated tram followed in 2012, and this Moderus Beta joined the fleets in Pozna, Katowice and Wroclaw; a double-ended version followed. Vehicles manufactured or refurbished by Modertrans can now be seen in Gdansk, Pozna, Elblag, Szczecin, Wrocław and on the Upper Silesian interurban network.
Now the company hopes the Moderus Gamma will take it into new markets as well as participating in the upcoming tender for 50 trams for its home city, which includes a requirement for 30 single-ended and 20 double-ended low-floor vehicles with a minimum 60% low-floor. The Moderus Gamma allows Modertrans to meet these requirements.